Data is king when it comes to content. And knowing not only what keywords are drawing people to your content, but what else they might be interested in can help you earn that crown.
Google Trends can help with that. The site is primarily geared toward journalists and news organizations, but the wealth of data contained there could be invaluable for you, too.
Beyond finding SEO keywords, Google Trends shows you related topics people are also searching for, and it can provide new blog ideas by showcasing different search phrases that might not be on your list. You can also drill down the results to your particular state or region.
It also can go back in time: Meaning you can see season and year-over-year trends. Finding when topics spike and fall can help you plan content geared toward those peak times.
So let’s say your business revolves around providing social media strategies to your clients. You can go to Google Trends, type in social media strategy and voila.
This graph shows interest over the past year in social media strategy. You can see it dips significantly around the holidays, which makes sense as people are more focused on family and stuffing their faces with delicious food than increasing their social media presence during that time period. Overall, it looks like fall is the biggest time for searches on social media strategy, with another peak in the weeks before spring begins.
Now let’s look at related searches.
This shows you related topics and keywords. Related topics shows that users searching for your term also searched for these other topics. In this case, editorial calendar and influencer marketing were top related topics, meaning people who are interested in social media strategy also want to know about editorial calendars (if you click down into that the top search phrase is “what is an editorial calendar” and information about influencer marketing.
On the right, you have related queries, which can also give you more blog post ideas and keyword ideas as well. All of these are clickable to go deeper into the data.
Now I want to know more about social media marketing and what users are searching around that and how it compares to social media strategy. You can easily add a second keyphrase — and up to five in all — to compare.
Here we can see more people are searching for social media marketing than social media strategy. Now let’s look just at social media marketing and see what we find.
This let’s you know more related topics and queries (notice influencer marketing pops up again?) and can provide even more fodder for blog posts and keywords. It looks like people have a lot of interest in social media marketing classes and companies near them, for starters.
Regional data is another great thing Google Trends provides. Let’s stick with the social media marketing since people really want to know places near them that offer those services.
Here you get what states they’re most interested in that topic. No surprise to me that New York has a lot of interest, but what’s the detail with Kansas & Utah showing up so high?!
To get more details, I changed the geography from “subregion” to “metro,” and discovered that the social media capital of the US isn’t New York or LA … it’s actually (wait for it):
TULSA, OKLAHOMA. WTF?! (You could have given me a million guesses, and I would have been wrong a million times.)
Overall, Google Trends works great if your business or blog topic is something tons of folks are searching for, but you may find you need to try several different keywords to get data, or you might not be able to get a lot of information at all.
If that happens, don’t fret — people are still finding your business and blog content, it just means the ratio of people searching for other stuff, like, ahem, the royal wedding, is so much higher there’s less data on your specific topic.
People search for things differently on different platforms though… that’s why Google Trends can also be super useful when it comes to optimizing your YouTube content.
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